Everyone is abuzz about the most anticipated collaboration of the season—Gardner and the Gang‘s collaboration with American model and actress Jaime King. The Lions Heart débuts May 31 and features designer Kristin Nystrom’s signature quirky characters, pops of color, and bold graphic styles all made from super soft, organic cotton—the quintessential play-friendly apparel with a dose of high fashion.
Known for her dynamic collaborations with equally accomplished designers, like Mini X Style and Mini Mocks, Kristin even collaborated with then-9 year old Ro of Hippie in Disguise on the release of a tee shirt the proceeds of which benefitted the World Wildlife Fund. Nystrom’s dedication to social justice, however, is infused in every aspect of each collection from materials and manufacturing right down the messages of peace conveyed in the stories of the characters in every collection. The Lions Heart continues the Gardner and the Gang tradition of offering unisex styles with a message of peace.
‘We’re creating something…that shares the message of camaraderie, togetherness, and playfulness…no matter if a boy wants to wear pink or a girl wants to rough and tumble in pants and a sweatshirt’ Jaime King says in the introduction of the collection’s look book, shot by talented photographer Karolina Henke. King further elaborated on Instagram (which is how King and Nystrom first became friends), calling the collection ‘the first #gendernuetral #genderfluid baby/kids/adult collection’. King is no stranger to the indie children’s fashion industry, having also collaborated with Sapling Child on a line of infant and toddler wear.
The dictionary defines ‘lionhearted’ as a person of extraordinary bravery, one who possess great courage—an apt name for a collection that challenges cultural prohibitions of boys wearing the color pink, or boys wearing dresses—a mood that is currently reverberating across children’s fashion with the ever-increasing popularity of unisex styles.
The Lions Heart‘s great takeaway message is of overcoming ‘otherness’ and finding common ground between traditional adversaries. A cat and dog, cuddle together on tee shirts and say ‘I wuv you’ to one another while the biblical metaphor of the lion laying down with the lamb, is also alluded to. However, true to Nystrom’s sense of humour, we have a fox and a hare sharing what appears to be a milkshake—or perhaps it’s a vegan smoothie!
We predict that one of the most popular styles will be the ‘best friends’ sweatshirt and are so thrilled to host a competition for our readers to win a pair for themselves or their children (available in kids and adult sizes), so be sure to head over to the Junior Style Competitions page and enter today.
Tell us which style is your fave in the comments and happy shopping!